notes on 3:13-15

Form

Like 9-11 these verses begin (v.13) with a call to witnesses, this time they are addressed directly, what follows (vv.14-15) is the judgment.

Language and Imagery

One assumes that the witnesses are those appealed to in v.9, here they are called not to testify to Israel's wrongdoing, but to witness the punishment.

This will not even spare the sanctuary of Bethel. Both its large and small altars will be destroyed.

The provision of different rooms or "houses" for different seasons in the mansions of the rich is known also from Jer 36:22 which refers to the king's "winter" house or room, as well as extra-Israelite evidence (see Andersen & Freedman, 411). Possibly Ahab's palace in Jezreel served a similar function (1 Kgs 21:1). Whether rooms or whole houses these were clearly a sign of great wealth, as was the ivory decoration of Ahab's palace in Samaria.


Comment on the whole chapter.


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© Tim Bulkeley, 1996-2005, Tim Bulkeley. All rights reserved.